All of us run short of time for something or the other. There’s always something in our personal lives, away from work, or even during our workday, that we have to set aside for a later that seems to take forever to come. How often do we come across something we wish we had had more time to accomplish? Something we might have done better if we only had the time.
While the time available to you is almost always beyond your control, how you organise that time can do wonders for your life, not just your working life. Here are some tips, that experts agree, should help you find more time for all aspects of your life, both work and relaxation.
Set your Priorities:
A brief period spent organising your life can seem to be getting in the way when you are looking to take on a challenge and fit a lot into the time available. It could easily end up saving you lot more time than you spend on it. When you do plan your day, take the time to make notes and lists.
It may seem enough to plan your day in your mind but it’s easy to go off track mid way if you don’t have a reminder to meet little targets along the way. Understand your limitations, this can be your greatest ally in helping you chalk out your workday.
If you have limited time to get more then one task done, be honest with yourself. Don’t try to force yourself to do more than you have been able to consistently in the past. While it’s always good to overcome your shortcomings, this is always a gradual change, be realistic in your approach to your immediate challenges. Setting priorities and concentrating on tasks in order of importance can be a great help in maintaining quality. If a task can be delegated, take advantage of that option.
This could be a great opportunity for you to train your staff to share duties on a regular basis and create efficiencies through flexibility at your workplace. Take into account your personal preferences and physical limitations. For example, if you are at your most efficient at the start of the day, set it aside for your more challenging tasks.
At the same time, don’t prioritise only on the basis of the ease with which you can accomplish a task. Often a greater more involved challenge is more critical to your business. Prioritise with an emphasis on outcome. The exact same principles can be applied to your life outside work. After all, despite the fact that you are changing roles, it’s still the same you that has to deal with the various aspects of your life. It’s important not to neglect any one aspect of your life in totality.
Maintaining the balance between the various personal and professional commitments you have in your life is the key to being able to accomplish your goals in both. Setting priorities can be the single most important thing you will do to be successful at this.
Make Time For Yourself
Most small business owners are taking care of so many different tasks that it’s often difficult for them to find time just to step back and take in the bigger picture. This may, however, be a critical component to your success. It’s not always possible for you to find window to do this without foresight.
You might be so busy that you have to start by setting a fixed time aside for this, but it will pay you rich dividends. Plan to have a time of day, or atleast week, when you can step back from whatever the next task at hand is and look at how far you’ve come with your overall goals for that period. Often this can be the easiest thing to ignore and put aside for later, but once you get into the habit, you will begin to notice the enormous benefits. Once again the same basic principles apply to your life at home.
Going from one set of commitments and responsibilities to another can leave you with little time for yourself and for your relationships. Burning the candle at both ends will make you prone to health issues and irritability. Remind yourself of what your priorities for yourself and your loved ones are on a regular basis, it’ll help you make time for them.
Set aside time for relaxation and rejuvenation, the more care you take of yourself the better you will be at meeting the goals you have set for yourself. This involves both focus and being able to walk away from even the most pressing concerns from time to time.
Take Advantage Of Technology
Technology is a great tool, but in itself it can be overwhelming as well. Far too often technology brings distractions within easy reach just as well as it allows us to achieve the most with our time. Take the time to see how many processes you can automate using simple technological tools that are easily available to you.
For example, if you have a fixed turn around time to complete your orders, why not have your initial email acknowledging a customer’s request be an automatically generated one? This will allow you to concentrate on other tasks and return to check on received orders at specific times set aside for the purpose. Many of the same technological tools at your disposal to simplify your work can be of use to you at home as well.
Electronic planners, electronic bill payments and online banking are all some of the many technological aids that can give you more time to spend relaxing with friends and family.